Volleyball drops in state match to SUU

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Kenzie Jones, Sports Editor, @KenzieScribbler

Even with a late clutch 7-2 run in the fifth and final set Utah Valley University fell to Southern Utah University on Tuesday night. The match that took place at Centrum Arena in Cedar City listed final scores of 22-25, 21-25, 25-23, 28-26, 12-15.

With a strong start that took full home court advantage, Southern Utah grabbed hold of a 9-15 advantage in the opening set. UVU pieced together a 5-1 run, after trailing 16-20, and brought the frame to a tie at 21-all. However, the T-Birds countered by scoring four of the next five points to secure the first set in their favor.

The Wolverines came into the second ready to battle hard and the score remained tight until SUU reeled off five straight points to take an advantage at 12-16. UVU wouldn’t give in and fought back late in the frame to pull within two at 21-23. That was as close as the Wolverines would get. Southern Utah claimed the second set.

Despite dropping the first two set’s the Wolverines were able to bounce back in the third. Taking a quick 7-2 lead by freshman Lexi Thompson and junior Lauren Bakker capping of the early run with back-to-back kills. UVU held the lead until SUU reeled off a 7-1 run of their own to steal away the advantage at 16-18. The frame went back and forth after that until UVU put the set away via a service ace  from freshman Sierra Starley and a kill from senior Kalani Norris.

Once again Utah Valley found themselves with the upper hand as the fourth set came under way. With a 16-11 advantage following a 5-1 run it looked like the Wolverines were into pace to force the match into five. Southern Utah came right back with a 6-1 run of their own to tie the score at 17-17. From there the T-Birds came to holding a 21-24 match-point advantage, but the Wolverines struck back with three clutch kills to tie the score at 24-all. The frame took on a nail bitting back and forth pattern from there until UVU managed to force the match into a fifth set after a kill form Bakker and a solo block from junior Megan Hunt.

The T-Birds had the hot hand early in the last set as they took a commanding lead of 5-12 after a 5-0 spurt. Utah Valley answered back with a clutch 7-2 run of their own to pull within two at 12-14, but it wasn’t enough of a rally. The Wolverines wouldn’t get any closer to the T-Birds as SUU put the match away on the next point, a kill form Ann Clappier.

The lady Wolverines will return toWAC play with their next match taking place this weekend. On Saturday, October 25 at 1:00p.m. MT, the UVU women’s volleyball team face off against Seattle University at Connolly Center.

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